College: (n) an educational institution or establishment
I never went to college.
I have used numerous excuses and lies to disguise this fact:
- “Well, the experience I’ve had is very similar to going to college.”
- “I took a few courses but never enough for graduation. Maybe I should check into that.”
Or the outright lie:
- “I am a graduate of Xavier University.”
(My thought? Most people would not know how to spell Xavier and would not pursue further.)
Yes, without college I felt a sense of self-discrimination. I was so convinced that people were looking down on me that I looked down on myself.
Then one day I simply asked my inner soul, do you wish you had gone to college?
I immediately realized that everything I had experienced would be gone in deference to the collegiate adventure.
That would include a wife, two kids, a music group, albums and writing a book. The case could be made that I would have eventually done these anyway–just with more book learning.
But one day–I guess I was about thirty-three years old–someone asked the question about college and I responded, “I never went.”
I really felt that the Earth moved beneath my feet–that the sky was falling in to trap me. But nothing actually happened. The person who inquired was a little surprised, since she felt I was very adept at what I was doing. But we were quickly on to talking about whether potato salad was better with mayonnaise or Miracle Whip.
You see, you don’t have to go to college for those kinds of discussions. Just have a heart, an idea you believe in and a willingness to be wrong.
I have found this to be the definition of higher education.